A recent rendezvous with my childhood book collection resulted in a wonderful discovery; a book titled “යාපනයට පාලමක්” (meaning “a bridge to Jaffna”) was nestling in the deep dark corners of my cupboard! I was transported back to that age when I voraciously read one adventure story after another. And I was glad that I read this book along with the usual “Famous Five”, “Hardy boys” and so on. Authored by Mr. Gunasena Withana and first published in 1995, it speaks of the hazardous journey of 3 youths to the northernmost parts of Sri Lanka. I’m sure that those books I read, along with the ideas of my elders, shaped my thinking and helped me to “write for reconciliation” even though the details elude my memory.
I also appreciate the fact that this author was “writing for reconciliation” in Sri Lanka even before some of us were born! His other books include “අයියාවගේ කෙනෙක්
“(“some one like an elder brother”,1970), “සිංහල පියෙකුට දාව දෙමළ මවකගේ කුස උපන් පුතකුගේ කථා වස්තුව”
(“the story of a son who was born to a Sinhalese father and a Tamil mother”,1987) and ”යාපනේ සීයා” (“grandfather from Jaffna”, 1992). It is also my humble wish that we would see many more articles and books written in Sinhalese and Tamil to shape the thinking of the future generations as well…